One company that flies a little under the radar yet is still pretty popular with a subset of collectors and enthusiasts is Sherwood. Sherwood was formed in 1953 in Chicago by the engineer Ed Miller and partner John Snow. Miller had designed an amplifier and wanted to design and build equipment under the Sherwood name. This particular stereo is the Sherwood S-7200.
The S-7200 was not their top of the line receiver, more middle of the pack, but still performed very well. It was made from 1973 up until about 1976 and retailed at about $360.00 when introduced. Sherwood even took pride in the fact that they were smaller than the other dominant companies in the audio field. Basically they felt that other manufacturers marketed to the mass consumer market while their equipment was targeted toward the more discriminating connoisseur. So, of course, they would sell far fewer receivers than say Pioneer or Sansui.
And, they did seller fewer receivers than the big boys. In fact, most of their production runs were only 500 to around 1500 units at a time. Still, they were considered higher end and were sold in the same audio stores that sold Marantz and McIntosh. Those days, of course, were the heyday of audio manufacturing so there was quite a bit of competition. While the S-7200 was designed by US engineers it was actually made in Japan.
The Sherwood S-7200 is listed at 40 watts per channel in the advertisement above but I’ve also seen it listed at 32 watts per channel. It’s all solid state but many say it has a nice and warm, yet clean, sound to it.
One of the weaknesses of this receiver is the power switch which is attached to the volume pot. It fails frequently and there is no easily available replacement. So, if yours works treat it gently. These receivers also don’t have the usual screws on the side of the cabinet that are used to get the cabinet off. The screws are actually in the feet which, when removed, allow you to remove the cabinet and get inside.
Sherwood made some good receivers. Since they aren’t as popular as the big names you can find them pretty at pretty inexpensive prices. A really nice S-7200 recently sold for $160. Not bad given its specs and reputation. Just remember that the power switch is temperamental so check it out before buying one of these units. Other than that the S-7200 is a great little receiver.